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Packing/Shipping 101

Discussion in 'Packing & Shipping' started by Wardsweb, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Wardsweb

    Wardsweb Behind The Curtain Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    7,171
    Location:
    San Antonio, Texas
    The number one complaint in buying gear online is packing. It has reach epidemic proportions, as more "newbies" try to cash in on internet sales. Here is a packing how to some of the members have come up with:

    Packing Reference
     

     

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  2. Wardsweb

    Wardsweb Behind The Curtain Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    7,171
    Location:
    San Antonio, Texas
    Here is a Marantz 2230 I packed to send to a Ebay winner. Well, this is not the only way to pack a piece of gear, nor is it the only way I pack but you get the idea.

    The unit is wrapped in six layers of 1/2" anti-static bubble and placed in a 275# double wall shipping box. The front and back are first covered with 1-1/2" of high density anti-static foam and then 1/2" of Styrofoam. The corners are furthur reinforced with 1-1/2" x 2-1/2" Styrofoam Blocks.

    An important part here is to make sure nothing is resting on or can come into contact with the knobs, switches or dials.
     

    Attached Files:

  3. Wardsweb

    Wardsweb Behind The Curtain Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    7,171
    Location:
    San Antonio, Texas
    Yet even another option on packing. This for a huge Pioneer SX-3900 that is HEAVY ! The styrofoam corner blocks hold the unit securely. The styrofoam strips rest agains the blocks and keep anything from hitting the face. there are way to many nice knobs and switches to have one bent or broken. There are more styrofoam strips to secure the blocks from the other sides and sheets of it to protect the top and bottom of the receiver. Note the box is 275# double wall construction.
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Wornears

    Wornears Age & Treachery

    Messages:
    2,762
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Packing

    I always wrap and enclose any electronic gear in a plastic bag (trash bag, etc.) before securing with outer material to protect units from water damage. Sometimes boxes get left in the rain, used as coffee tables, etc.

    My UPS delivery man told me "off the record" to pack anything so it can take a full drop "at least once" from waist-high (approx. 4-ft). About the distance a box can be dropped from the back of a truck to the ground.

    When packing manuals or other paper products always put in plastic (see above; ziplock bags work well) and include a stong "stiffener" to keep flat. Do not write "Do Not Bend," on the outside of the package -- for obvious reasons. It's disheartening to receive an original manual crumpled up. Invest in carboard mailers.
     
  5. Army

    Army Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,549
    Location:
    East Central, Iowa
    Re: Packing

    I do the same ! Dust was the reason for me. I got a pair of poorly boxed speakers coated in dust. Big pain in the butt to clean.

    So where is the best place to get good boxes for shipping that don't cost a small fortune ?
    Wardsweb where do you get the stryofoam inserts like that? Premade or are you making them yourself and or outta what? Same for the double wall boxes??

    BTW Great thread !
    Army
     
  6. Wardsweb

    Wardsweb Behind The Curtain Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    7,171
    Location:
    San Antonio, Texas
    All my packing comes from a local box manufacturer. These are the guys who supply to all the moving companies and even the boxes U-Haul sells (greatly marked up). Look in your yellow pages under boxes: corrugated & fiber. You are looking for the guys who make the stuff not resale outlets.
     

     

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  7. Wornears

    Wornears Age & Treachery

    Messages:
    2,762
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Box Source

    I've had very good luck buying used moving boxes. Go to the local van lines storage/main facility. Vans often return with empty boxes in great condition from a move, and they stockpile them -- for a short time. Get friendly with the staff and they can usually let you know when a box return collection has arrived. I've typically bought them for 1/2 retail cost.
     
  8. Army

    Army Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,549
    Location:
    East Central, Iowa
    Ward good info !

    I looked in the yellow pages under boxes. Got four leads just have to check em out for price. Was buying from Uhaul and paying big $$ but I looked into movers since I knew they would have boxes. The obvious escaped me :dammit: :withstpd:

    Thanks
    Army
     
  9. piece-it pete

    piece-it pete What, me worry?

    Messages:
    4,096
    Location:
    Cleveland, OH
    Great post!

    WW that looks better than anything I've packed or received.

    My biggest disappointment so far was Hsu tube subwoofers, came wrapped in ONE LAYER of flimsy cardboard (no cushioning material), and the drivers were packed loose in one carton with an old album between them :eek:.

    Fortunately nothing happened to the drivers, and most of the damage to the tubes was cosmetic, but one of them was hit so hard it knocked a port loose!!!

    All things considered I think I got lucky.

    Pete
     
  10. GordonW

    GordonW Speakerfixer Subscriber

    Messages:
    17,869
    Location:
    Marietta/Moultrie GA USA
    I'm also a stickler, very particular about packing methods for most stuff. I'm a BIG FAN of the hard styrofoam board insulation, sold by Home Depot, Lowes and the like. GREAT material. I've never had an item damaged, that was in at least 1 inch thick layer of this stuff..

    Of course, by "layer"... I mean FULL 360-degree, all-sides, no holes COVERAGE of the item by the foam board. I basically "brick in" the item with the board sheets, until it CANNOT MOVE in the box.

    I tend not to splurge for E-paks, in most cases... I've found, once you "rigidize" a box with styrofoam sheets, and thoroughly tape ALL the seams, edges and corners with a couple layers of packing tape, NOTHING is going to cause it much damage.

    Here's an example of my packing, taken by someone who received the enclosed Crown IC150 from me. This is typical of how I've kept MANY things out of trouble...
     
    CBD Me likes this.
  11. Toasted Almond

    Toasted Almond R.I.P - November 17, 1952 - April 19, 2016

    I am quite fortunate. The boxes and foam padding that airplane parts come in are fantastic, and free to cheap slugs like me. I just go across the street to our supply building. Those guys love me because they don't have to bust up and discard the stuff I take. Win-Win!

    Plus, the government replaces my/our computers about every three weeks or so it seems, and there is always a lot of that type material laying in the hallways outside offices. I've been getting some really good boxes that nest inside each other that way lately. Good foams too.

    TA
     

     

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  12. mech986

    mech986 Text ↓ optional Posts:>18,000 Subscriber

    Messages:
    19,293
    Location:
    La Habra, California, USA
    At my school, our IT department has plenty of ex-computer and computer monitor shipping boxes and you know these are all double walled with styrofoam fillers and can handle 25-75 pound contents. They usually throw them out if nobody asks for them. My boys just shipped 50 pounds of LEGO's in one of them (can you believe they got $150 for those legos?) :banana:
    These also make good moving and packing boxes because they are pretty big and solid.

    So check with large companies with IT departments (big networked companies, hospitals, colleges/universities, anybody who does upgrades). Heck, even try large retail outlets like BestBuy, if the sales guys are friendly, you can get plenty from them out the back door.

    I had a pair of big tall subwoofers' original boxes packed then into refrigerator boxes cut to size with a matching top cover box. They were definitely sturdy!!

    I've found box sources like clothing stores but they are obviously of lighter build.

    Great Thread!

    Regards,

    Bart
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2004
  13. Perry

    Perry New Member

    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Taiwan
    I would like to add something about the use of hard styrafoam panels as packing material. I have received two amps in which the sellers used these panels, with very little more in the way of packing, and in both times the amps have been damaged. I feel that if these panels are used, they must be used together with bubble wrap. First bubble wrap the item numerous times and then, perhaps, use the panels. If panels are not used, something else substantial must be.

    The damage that has happened in both cases has been the same. The rear panel of the amps have been pushed in. It seems that when using only the panels, a strong hit to the box is not absorbed by the panels but transferred to the item packed.
     
  14. Vintage TX

    Vintage TX Analog forever

    Messages:
    5,910
    Location:
    Houston. Texas.
    Yes, I use both styrofoam and peanuts + 2-3 layers around the deck.:)
     
  15. Vintage TX

    Vintage TX Analog forever

    Messages:
    5,910
    Location:
    Houston. Texas.
    Final before sealing the box.
    This was a Tascam deck and here is the feedback from the buyer after arrival.:

    "Yesterday I received the Teac 2A mixer,Meterbridge, manuals and brochure.

    Everything arrived safely due to the excellent packing that you did.

    I won't have time to try them out until this weekend, but will let you know how I like them or if I have any questions.

    I have been reading through the Tascam 22-4 manual and finding it really helpful.

    The Tascam arrived last week.

    The packing was really superb as well.

    A friend of mine was here when I unpacked it, and he commented that he has never seen anything so well packed."

    I like happy messages like that.:)
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2004
  16. Shain

    Shain AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,157
    Location:
    NE
    I do something similar to what Wardsweb did in the first picture, except I first line the box (all six sides) with 1 1/2" or 2" thick white insulation board.

    I put the unit inside a clear plastic bag when I finish restoration work, and leave it that way to ship.

    Normally I use a 24" x 24" x 10" (or 12" ) box.

    I roll up about a 6" roll of large bubble wrap and put a roll on the front and back of receiver, then wrap the entire unit with a couple of layers of large bubble wrap.

    Any space between the sides or front get packed with different thicknesses of white insul board. This holds the unit away from the sides of the box (and 2" insul board liner)

    Pretty much don't use peanuts anymore. Too much of a mess to work with.

    Units over 45 lbs get double boxed too. Seems to be the weight threshold for heavy units. If not double boxed, the heavy units don't survive well.
    The unit is packed as described above, then put in another larger box, usually lined with the 2" insul board.

    I'm a firm believer in the corner block method shown in Wardswebs second picture. Seems to be about the best way for heavier units (over 30 lbs)
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2004

     

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  17. Vintage TX

    Vintage TX Analog forever

    Messages:
    5,910
    Location:
    Houston. Texas.
    Old carpet padding that smells dogpiss and grit ?:rolleyes:
    That's nasty ! :puke: :puke:
     
  18. drh4683

    drh4683 digital is overrated

    Messages:
    1,584
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I debated whether I should post my opinion, as I knew Id get this kind of responce. Ive deleted the post to prevent futher criticism

    I have enough sense to know whats clean and whats not.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2004
  19. Grumpy

    Grumpy Krusty old SOB! Yes, I own Audiokarma Staff Member Admin Sponsor Subscriber

    Messages:
    25,424
    Location:
    Texas
    Doug

    No I think your idea is great ! My brother In law has a carpet company and I can get his thicker/harder foam padding cheaper then I can other types of "real" shipping supplies.

    You can bet your bottom dollar I will be experimenting with this stuff. Thanks !!

    grumpy
     
  20. piece-it pete

    piece-it pete What, me worry?

    Messages:
    4,096
    Location:
    Cleveland, OH
    I just got a tip from my UPS driver - they don't drop/toss packages labeled "liquid" because they don't want to clean up a mess.

    Pete
     

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